Povetkin punches the fight out of Boswell, forces eighth round stoppage

3 Dec

Alan Dawson – London

Russian prizefighter Aleksandr Povetkin made a successful first defence of his ‘Regular’ WBA heavyweight world championship at the Hartwall Arena, Helsinki, Finland on Saturday, December 3 as, despite a very slow start, he fought with intuition in round six onwards and managed to score a knockout over Cedric Boswell in round eight. It was a flurry that felled Boswell, but the finishing punch was a short-range right hand.

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Dawson’s scorecard

Round 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12
Povetkin 10 10 9 9 9 10 10 10
Boswell 10 9 10 10 10 9 9 8

Official verdict: Eighth round technical knockout.

The first round was predominantly a feeling out stanza. Both fighters jabbed well, Povetkin employed head movement in order to duck under Boswell’s hook shot and, each man looked well conditioned and ready to participate in a distance fight should neither fighter secure a stoppage.

Defending champion Sasha began to establish a fistic authority in the second round… his lead punch looked increasingly likely to squash the Boz’s schnoz, his left hook proved a quality counter-striking shot and his right hand over the top found the American’s cheekbone. Boswell showed increasing signs that he was well-matched with his Russian counterpart, though, and used both his jab and right cross well.

By round three, Povetkin still had not found a way to look a level above Boswell and it was Cedric who entertained by flurrying at the midsection in the final minute. There was a moment in the fourth where Boswell ended up on the canvas but the referee correctly ruled it a slip, not the result of a Povetkin punch. The catalyst for the fall was due to what had been clever footwork and upper body movement when Aleksandr was attacking.

This had been a motif throughout the stanza and this canny defending will have perhaps attracted an admiring glance from the judges at ringside as it not only nullified Povetkin’s attempted onslaught, but also made the champion’s skillset look less than professional.

Povetkin’s coach Teddy Atlas’ talks have been criticised in the past because they are perceived to be too dramatic. His between-round speech during the championship rounds against Ruslan Chagaev… imploring his charge to fight in the memory of his deceased father, worked though, as Povetkin walked away with the ‘Regular’ WBA world title.

However, his instructions in Finland: “This is about the title, we want to still have that title tomorrow, you need to throw more,” had gone unheeded. Boswell hooked a right hand into Povetkin’s midsection in the sixth round and, when Povetkin sought to retaliate, he would use the ropes to maneuver away which ensured that, if Aleksandr did land, it would not be a clean connection.

Boswell was, by all means, an awkward target for Povetkin to find. One way to increase one’s own shots landed statistic is by doubling up on the jab, something Povetkin has been able to do in past fights and something that Atlas will have meant by throwing more but still, by the midway stage, it wasn’t something we saw from the Russian.

His power in the sixth had become telling though and Boswell was forced to clinch. Povetkin’s technical skill and effective aggression took hold in the seventh and he tagged Boswell with uppercuts, hooks shots and the rhythm and fluidity that Cedric commanded in the early rounds, appeared like it was being beaten out of him with each punch landed.

By the round’s end, Boswell was a defeated man, he slumped at the ropes by his corner, the referee looked as though he had been tempted to call it off but the American was very much saved by the bell.

Every hellacious left hook that Povetkin powered into Boswell’s chin forced the challenger onto the backfoot in the eighth. Swift right hands, a left hook and a flurry against the ropes forced Boswell down onto the canvas… the American had been on borrowed time as it was, but the knockdown beat what fight he had left in him, out of him.

He struggled to even get off the ground, he failed to make the count and his eyes were still dancing around in his skull by the count of ten. When Boswell had regained his senses, he congratulated Povetkin on his performance and heralded him as a great champion who placed his shots well.

With victory, Aleksandr rose to 23-0-0, 16ko while Boswell dropped to 35-2-0, 26ko.

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2 Responses to “Povetkin punches the fight out of Boswell, forces eighth round stoppage”

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  1. Povetkin punches the fight out of Boswell, forces eighth round stoppage « On The Beak - December 4, 2011

    […] Povetkin punches the fight out of Boswell, forces eighth round stoppage […]

  2. On The Beak boxing news: 2011 « On The Beak - January 10, 2012

    […] Povetkin punches the fight out of Boswell, forces eighth round stoppage […]

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